Sounding Place

  • Mickey Vallee
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Sound book series (PASTS)


This chapter removes sound from sound studies in its rhythmic analysis of a place, emphasizing how the infrastructure of audibility is manifested in the vibration of place, taking up how a place produces rhythms and vibrations through multilateral timescales. Grounded in a case study of the Frank Slide (Canada’s deadliest rockslide), this chapter introduces a new rhythmic and temporal perspective on disaster sites as organs on the cusp of the past and the future, and bound by a vibrational ethic of the earth, which produces multi-scalar vibrations that are vastly imperceptible, enormous things of scale and pace; the rockslide is the imaginary organ that binds the sounding of place in terms of its temporal retentions and protentions. The analysis considers how these disparate activities contribute to the vitalization, devitalization, and revitalization of place in a way that challenges the “dark tourism” paradigm that has come to frame disaster sites. The chapter thus proposes a unique synthesis between infrastructures of audibility and the imaginary organs contained within them so as to elucidate and explore how various overlapping temporalities make up the visible and invisible materials of a place.


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© The Author(s) 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mickey Vallee
    • 1
  1. 1.Centre for Interdisciplinary StudiesAthabasca UniversityAthabascaCanada

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